East Bay trees sacrificed for solar panels



RICHMOND, Calif. (KGO) – There is outrage in the East Bay over trees that were chopped down and it is the reason they were cut down that has people so upset.

A grove of more than 100 trees were chopped down to make way for, of all things, a solar system. The trees were cut down at the popular Point Pinole Regional Shoreline Park in Richmond.

The trees used to greet park visitors, but now people can see the West County Detention Facility. The clear-cutting surprised county supervisors and many long-term park visitors.

“Shock, horror. Where have all the trees gone? What’s going to happen to the birds, the owls, and we heard nothing about it. No notification about it,” said park visitor Denis Hetherington.

It began as a project to convert 13 county buildings to solar power. Most of the solar panels were installed on rooftops, but the county public works department, along with Main Street Power – a green construction company – felt the area was the best place to build the panels for the West County jail.


The hypocrisy of the environmental movement…

True. Couldn’t they have found a better place? Think of all the owls that had to leave and find a new home.

Let’s think.
Where is this? New england? Plenty of tall trees there.
The trees may grow again, the solar panels not.
But that is a foreign opinion.

It is California. You do not see the irony and hypocrisy of the situation?

They are destroying nature to put in artificial panels? How many years did it take for those trees to grow? What was all displaced in removing the trees?

It is an isolated instance of an ironic decision to cut down trees to build solar panels. How this incident is in any way indicative that environmentalists are all hypocrits or that solar panels are a horrible idea is beyond me. The complaints here about it are also ironic, because oil companies destroy vast natural treasures to allow for drilling without hearing anything but “drill baby drill” on these forums, then someone cuts down a few trees in park in California, and the hearts are bleeding. Irony, it cuts both ways.

I would also note that is not simnply a matter of ‘natural’ vs, ‘artificial.’ There are rational arguments for the diversification of energy sources, it’s not just sentimentalism for plants, no matter how much some people try to paint it as such.

Hmm? :confused:

Why do you think that environmentalists made this decision? According to the article in the first post, the decision was made by low level employees of the city’s general services.

[quote=article in first post]“The line level staff in general services, working with the contractor on this, felt they had the ability to do this without checking with the department director or people in a higher position in the department,” said John Gioia, a Contra Costa County supervisor.

From what I have experienced, the persons directly involved in grounds keeping are oriented towards ease of maintenance. Environmentalism is likely well down their list of priorities. Of course, I may be wrong about the persons who made the decision. Why do you think they are environmentalists?

Well, it certainly will contribute low-cost energy…if they burn the wood in properly constructed fireplaces.

I’m sure no environmentalist would be thinking that, since wood is worse than oil as far as being clean is concerned. And of course real fireplaces seem to be going out of fashion.

I was being a bit on the ironic side, but I will also say that some wood-burning inserts or stoves are extremely efficient. I have a feeling they’ll be more in fashion when this administration causes everybody’s utilities to become much more expensive, as they have promised to do.

I thought you might’ve been. My family’s house (that I no longer live in) has a very old fireplace, and I was apparently one of the few kids my age in my neighborhood who knew the experience of indoor wood fires.

Relating to the goal of increasing utlity prices (how often do politicals actually get accomplished anyway?), it would be nice if someone up there would do some reading of, say, Pavlov, and realize that the idea is to tax people who use oil or gas inexcess, and reward those who use less. Economists call it ‘price discrimination,’ (or in this case, tax discrimination I suppose). That sort of scheme could reduce energy consumption and in turn reduce both pollution and bring down prices, without bringing down everyone’s income, but still bringing in some tax revenue from those who insist on keeping their thermostats high no matter how much they pay for it.

Seriously. I’ve thought about acquiring land and building a hobbit hole, but it would probably never be up to code and I’d have to tear it down and pay 4x the land value in fines. The amount of government in this country has passed the point of absurd.

The “Environmental” movement confronts the “Green” movement. :rolleyes:

It is painfully clear that the two movements, though both left - liberal inspired, are at cross purposes when it comes to convergence issues as this.

Why didnt they put the panels on top of the trees?
I am joking but sincerely, California needs trees…

I miss sitting in front of a fire place. My mom used to always have a bowl of nuts on a table in front of the fire, we’d chat, play scrabble.

Now we have to check to see if we’re even allowed to use the fireplace first, though.


It’s just ridiculous. I’m sick and tired of the government in my mix for silly things.

The Winter Spare the Air program notifies residents when particulate matter levels are anticipated to be unhealthy.

‘Anticipated’. :rolleyes: Tomorrow looks like it’s going to be a really cold day. People will be trying to warm up in front of a fire - quick! Stop them! PG & E didn’t do too well in the third quarter. :rolleyes:

Anyways, in regard to the article - the notion that it’s a case of ‘the left hand not knowing what the right is doing’ (because that’s how they’re trying to play it off, miscommunication) that’s another load. The jail wanted to install solar panels. So they knew they were going to be installed. They obviously discussed location - because between the company and the jail they determined it’d be a safety issue to put them ontop of the jailhouse building.

Their mistake was thinking no one would notice, or care. But hey - there WILL be green jobs…Obama’s gotta make those numbers, whatever the cost.

An extra benefit to adding a solar system to your home apart from the considerable reduction in fuel bills, is it also improves the efficiency of your existing boiler and extends it’s life too.

solar panels maryland

That’s not good. Fortunately, my state is pretty unregulated and there are vast forests, so wood is cheap and nobody bothers you if you burn it. No building codes in the country, either. It’s interesting to see how efficiently country people use wood for home heat. It actually does a very good job without a whole lot of smoke if you do it right.

When I was a little kid, wood was the only source of heat we had. I learned the skill somewhat, but compared to the local hill folk, I’m really just relearning it. Right now, I’m one insert away from heating with nothing else. Fortunately, the people who built the house we bought liked the idea of fireplaces for decor and installed three. So we converted one to a pellet burner. That heats the whole house on most days, and it doesn’t smoke at all. One bag of pellets will pretty well last the week during most of the winter, and it requires no tending. But for extremely cold, windy days, it takes a bit more than that. I’ll probably get it all taken care of this fall.

But if you do it right, even wood-burners don’t smoke if the wood is right and you regulate the temperature and air flow properly so the smoke itself is burned in the firebox.The best wood around here is year-old post oak. Dense, dry, and high-energy. With that, you load the firebox twice in a 24 hour period, usually with 3 pieces each time on really cold days. Not that big a bother.

Don’t give up on your hobbit hole just yet.